Opening Call: The Australian share market is to open lower.
U.S. stocks were higher, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq ending the week at records.
The 10-year Treasury note yield fell 1.9 basis points to 0.859%.
The WSJ Dollar Index recently was down 0.16% to 86.60.
Crude oil prices ended slightly lower ahead of an OPEC meeting. Gold futures logged their steepest weekly fall in two months.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index lost 0.5% as investors responded to the latest escalation in trade frictions with China.
U.S. stocks edged higher during a holiday-shortened session as gains across shares of technology and health-care companies pushed the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite to new closing records.
The broad S&P 500 added 0.2% as of the early 1 p.m. ET close of trading in New York, while the Nasdaq advanced 0.9%, putting both benchmarks above closing highs set earlier this week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also traded higher, edging up about 0.1%, but fell short of hitting a new milestone.
Gold and silver futures settled sharply lower, registering the biggest weekly slides for the commodities since late September, as prices have been buffeted by upbeat news on coronavirus vaccines that have driven investors to equities and away from the perceived haven of bullion.
On Friday, February, the new most-active contract, shed 1.3% to settle at $1,788.10 an ounce. Meanwhile, December gold finished 1.3% lower to end at $1,781.90 an ounce.
Meanwhile, March silver, the new most-active contract, lost 3.4% to settle at $22.639
U.S. benchmark oil prices dropped 0.4% to settle at $45.53 a barrel, bringing to an end a four-session price rally ahead of a meeting between OPEC and Russia regarding soon-to-expire emergency production cuts.
Analysts generally expect the group will extend cuts into the first few months of 2021, but given WTI crude’s 27% price surge since Nov. 1, the analysts are no longer certain of such an outcome.
Major currencies were mixed against the US dollar in European and US trade. The Euro rose from lows near US$1.1915 to highs near US$1.1963 and closed near these highs at the US close. The Aussie dollar rose from lows near US73.65 cents to highs near US73.98 cents and was near US73.85 cents at the US close. The Japanese yen held between 103.90 yen per US dollar and JPY104.20 and was near JPY104.10 at the US close.
European sharemarkets closed higher on Friday to complete the fourth week of gains. Shares in Spanish lender BBVA gained 4.2% after ending merger talks with Banco Sabadell (-13%). The panEuropean STOXX 600 index rose 0.4% and lifted 0.9% on the week.The German Dax index also rose 0.4% on Friday. And the UK FTSE index edged 0.1% higher. The European Union and Britain said
there were still substantial differences over a trade deal. In London trade, shares in Rio Tinto rose 0.4% while shares in BHP rose by 0.6%.
Earlier Friday, China’s major stock benchmarks settled higher after a volatile session.
The Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.1%, the Shenzhen Composite Index added 0.3% and the ChiNext Price Index lifted 0.4%. Banks and securities brokerages extended gains in late trade, pushing the three indexes into positive territory.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index grew 0.3%, as banks and property developers made solid gains.
The Nikkei Stock Average gained 0.4%, helped by real estate and precision instrument stocks. Investors are eying developments regarding Japan’s Covid-19 containment measures amid a rising number of infections.